So You Say You Rely on Science…

I was motivated by a comment in Utah’s post, The Dark Age Alchemist.  Utah’s correct: much of the objection to those who believe in God comes from those who believe science has “proven” God doesn’t exist.  There’s a small — well, HUGE problem with such an assumption: it’s not true.  Science is just a tool, and like any tool, its usefulness depends on the skills of those who use it.  If those using it suffer from false assumptions, the results are likely to be false.  As I have mentioned before, at various times in history, science has “proven” the earth was flat; that it was at the center of the solar system; that all matter was made up of earth, wind, fire and air; that atoms were the smallest particles, then electrons, protons and neutrons, then quarks and lipids and now what?  Science has even “proven” that certain races were superior to others.  So to accept the notion that science can “prove” anything is as much dogma as anything any religion ever uttered – especially since science has yet to offer the first explanation for how the universe came to be from nothing without having a cause.

Anyway, this got me to thinking about a very little known book I have in my possession.  I posted an excerpt from it once before, and it was well received.  So I thought I might share another small section of it with you today – just because Utah started me to thinking about it:

Now let’s go back and look at the nearly infinitely fine-tuned balance in our universe. There are at least 322 known variables in our universe that science has demonstrated must have the precise values we observe or life as we know it couldn’t exist in this universe. In addition, the values of these variables often appear to be counter-intuitive to that which science would have expected. Among these 322 factors are the space-time continuum, itself; physical constants such as gravity and nuclear binding forces; the balance and types of matter in the universe; the types, sizes and distribution of the galaxies; the shape of our galaxy; our location in our galaxy; the type, size and age of our star; the existence and number of gas giants in our solar system; the shape, orientation and orbital periods of these gas giants; the size of the Earth; the location of the Earth in the solar system; the shape and period of the earth’s orbit; the size, orbital location, orientation and period of the lunar orbit; the elemental make-up of the Earth; the forces governing the Earth’s internal furnace and tectonic plates; the Earth’s magnetic field; the unique properties of water and the existence of a thin, oxygen/nitrogen atmosphere. Scientists differ on the odds they give that the values for any one of these different factors would naturally exist as they do in our universe from between 1 in 10 to 1 in 1,000. But, if we are generous and we allow that they are all 1 in 10, this works out to a probability that our universe could have just happened naturally of 1 in 10³²². The mathematically accepted value for statistical zero is only 1 in 1050. This means the odds that our universe would naturally happen as we observe it are 10272 times more than statistical zero! That’s a 1 with 272 zeros after it!
These numbers are very hard to understand because they are so huge, but I happen to believe it is important to show you what we’re really talking about. I think the best way to do that is to actually show you the numbers. Here is what these numbers look like on paper:

The chance of winning a power ball lottery:
1 in 200,000,000.

The number of seconds since the birth of the universe:
1 in 440,000,000,000,000,000.

The odds at which the statistical chance of something happening is considered zero [i.e. the statistical chance of zero]:
1 in 100,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000.

The odds that the 322 known universal constants would all just happen to have their known values:
1 in 10,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,

000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,

000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,

000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,

000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,

000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000.

The numbers in that excerpt are real, and you can verify them for yourself if you’d like (just remember, they take the side of “most likely to happen.”  The numbers get even more unbelievable if you take the middle ground).  They are also based in science.  Now, if you are one of those who has accepted the assertion that science has “killed” God, ask yourself why you believe that when SCIENCE CLEARLY SAYS GOD MUST EXIST?!

16 thoughts on “So You Say You Rely on Science…

  1. “Life As We Know It’ is a big phrase when you are dismissing the likelihood or not of Life, as we know IT, being brought about by chance. Yes the odds are great, look at our puny efforts to create a closed artificial, self-sustaining environment. The Biosphere cost 250 million K, and it couldn’t sustain a half-dozen people without taking in oxygen from the outside.

    But odds mean little when one has infinity to work with. In an infinite amount of time, those monkeys will put out
    Shakepeare’s ouvre,as well as the Hardy Boys series; in an infinite universe, an infinite number of teams of monkeys have been assigned to the task, it will happen.. And to believe that there is a supreme being who can do all the things its believers claim are in its power require one more parameter, making it 323. That is faith. If you have faith that your god exists, nothing I say, nothing anybody can say, no logic, nothing will deter you from your belief that there is an invisible, all-powerful being, whose motives are mysterious, and his ways even more so.. Science needs more precision than that; there’s just no place for faith in the laboratory; God is an uncontrolled-for variable.

    As for science ‘proving’ that God does not exist, Who said that? He/she is not a scientist, or they would know that you cannot prove a negative. One cannot prove God does not exist, never existed, any more than one can prove that Muslims don’t really hate us, or that those WMD’s of Saddam’s aren’t still out there in the desert somewhere. So, who made that conveniently straw man-like statement?

    • Melfamy,

      One does NOT have infinity to work with. There can be no “infinity” in play because it causes too many additional problems.

      As for life as we know it, that is another nice way to wave your magic wand and suppose life could exist another way. But in truth, neither you, I nor any human alive can envision life in a world that didn’t possess the traits our universe possesses because we cannot envision what the universe would be – or even IF it would be — were any of the values of these many constants different.

      And science has proven there must be a Creator as it has proven this world cannot exist as it is by chance. This notion that one must be a scientist is stupid and I reject it because it means we can have no science at all because the men and women who developed science were not scientists and, therefore, we can’t build off their work because they were not scientists. Follow your reasoning and you would be forced to never comment again on such matters because you are not a philosopher. I would reject that claim, too, because I hold we ALL have the ability to think and reason for ourselves. SO think, my friend, before you just spout off some irrational nonsense like that. I know it to be beneath you 😉

        • Yep. Melfamy is assuming we have an infinite amount of time to deal with in the creation of the universe. We don’t. The best information available to us suggests this universe DID have a start, and it WILL have an end. It will not contract back onto itself and start all over, it will expand into nothingness (See Hawking’s work).

          What’s more, the monkey analogy is non-operative. They will NEVER bang out the Shakespeare play. Why? They cannot have an infinite amount of time – it is a universal constant that we have a beginning and we WILL have an end.

          Finally, as for the claim that there is no room for faith in science: what does Melfamy think a THEORY is? It is an educated guess, but it is NOT “proof.” So to act as though it were “proof” (i.e. accept evolution as fact) is FAITH! That is by definition. The problem is that people know so little about science. Science accepts uncertainty all the time – it must. Otherwise, it couldn’t function as there is no way to measure anything to a degree of absolute certainty. Once you understand this, you understand that EVERYTHING about Man’s existence is truly based on faith – in one form or another.

          And, G, the alien technology thing: NOT! If “they” showed up here now, we wouldn’t call it “magic,” we’d know they had advanced knowledge we do not. This objection only holds for the most primitive of peoples, and it certainly does not help with the idea that there is no Creator.

  2. Sa-weet! Here’s what you were referring to! See what happens when I get distracted and don’t catch up on my reading?
    G., I dig your follow-up comment as well.

    Thanks for a good laugh this morning, B. My mathematically challenged mind got a brain freeze with your sentence:”The numbers in that excerpt are real, and you can verify them for yourself.” Hell, I don’t think I could figure out a tip with 272 zeros after it….

  3. Accepting a supernatural cause because the reality is too complicated reminds me of a Carl Sagan Quote;

    “Any sufficiently advanced alien technology is indistinguishable from magic.”

    • That’s because Sagan either held a limited understanding of the problem or – the more likely – chose to deny the implications of what is known. How do you know gravity exists? How do you know that magnetism exists, or the wind? You can’t see such things, but you can sometimes feel them and you can observe their effects. The thing is, you have to do so INDIRECTLY in many cases. This is how it goes with the existence of this universe. We have discovered planets and other bodies in the universe based on the effects we saw in other bodies we could directly observe. We knew these signs indicated the existence of these other bodies we cannot see. Today, we accept they are there, like dark matter, but we cannot see them or “prove” they are there. Why do we accept them then? Because the things we DO know that say they MUST be there. Well, we know that something cannot come from nothing, yet here we are. We know this universe is FAR beyond the statistical chance of 0, yet here we are. We know that, if we heard dot-dot-dot-dash-dash-dash-dot-dot-dot coming from space, we would say “SIGNS OF INTELLIGENT LIFE!” Yet we see the Encyclopedia Britannica in DNA and we say “RANDOM ACCIDENT!” HA! Those who wish to deny will do so no matter what. That is why there is a functional mathematical structure to describe almost everything we see in the universe, only with the earth at the center (yes, look it up, it has been worked out). What does this tell us: that we can design an explanation for anything, but that doesn’t mean our explanation is reality. So telling me that my belief in what I know MUST exist – the Creator – is baseless faith is far weaker than your faith in something based on your acceptance that you simply haven’t discovered your answer yet. In fact, I admire you because you live according to a much stronger faith than I. At least I have some reason to trust what I believe…

        • Yes, because I take great pleasure in the inner torment his work has caused him. When he first “discovered” that the”Big Bang THEORY” is the best explanation for the information currently available to us, he determined that it dictated the necessity for a Creator. Later, he rejected that because – for whatever reason – he “knows” there is no God. So he developed a theory of a boundryless universe. That was later shot down by his arch nemeses in the black hole debates. Now he has a new theory out, but this one rests on imaginary math, such as the square root of -1. The cool thing with this new theory is, when you take away the imaginary numbers and place real numbers into the equations, you end up back at “The Big Bang.”

          Anyway you slice it, the universe had a beginning, and that requires a cause, and that cause has to be something that has the power to manipulate the things we call natural laws. In other words, that cause is God. And all this nonsense about “who caused God” is nothing more than drivel from people who either do not understand the logic here, or who continue to deny it.

          The whole question rests on that which has a beginning, and the answer to God is that He has no beginning or end. That gets us into a simple world that we now have good reason to suspect – there are at least 8-9 dimensions. If just 1 of them is another dimension that functions similar to the one we call time, only it intersects our timeline at a right angle, then God doesn’t need a beginning and He also has the ability to deal with us, 1-on-1, throughout our entire lives (there’s your answer for how God can hear every prayer at the same time). Add another dimension and you can resolve the miracles mentioned in the Bible, such as the sun standing still in the sky, or even disappearing. All God has to be able to do is manipulate this other dimension and he can pull this off with no problem – much like that idiot on “The Big Bang Theory” sitcom who talks about being able to pull his clothes off without ever having to undo them. We now know these things are possible, but the people who should be trying to explain them are too busy looking for a way to explain away the implications because they do not want to accept the simplest answer: God is!

  4. Big Bang? I’ve never seen nor heard of the show. It sounds naughty……………what channel and when?

    By the by, you shouldn’t take pleasure in another’s torment (even if you do disagree with his opinion).

    • I take no pleasure in it in the sense you are seeing. I take pleasure in it because I know that it is caused by the fact that – somewhere, deep inside – Hawking knowings the truth and is wrestling with his desire to deny it. It gives me hope that he will accept that truth before it’s too late. Whereas, if he did not feel the need to explain away the inevitable and just denied the truth out of hand, it would suggest he was doomed – and in THAT case, I would feel the need to morn.

        • Not so much an atheist as I was a Deist: you know, the “watch-maker” sort of god. I “knew” there were aliens and scientific answers for everything. But that was when I was in engineering school. When I switched over to philosophy because I had decided to go to law school (only 1 yr left on my engineering degree), I suddenly started to understand how much my “scientific schooling” had left out. That’s when I realized I didn’t know SQUAT! Still don’t. Only thing that makes me any different from anyone else is I learned how to master logic, and logic taught me how to ask better questions – but the answers still elude me more than you seem to think.

  5. I don’t say random accident, and a theory is more than an educated guess, which is what one calls an hypothesis. A theory is that hypothesis which best explains the known facts, period.

    Whoever, whatever wrote the laws of physics started it all, certain elements have no choice in the matter (bad pun) but to combine, or bond, to be precise.( Incidentally, co-valent bonding has been declared illegal by the Oklahoma state senate). electrochemical reactions occur, and voila!, a miracle occurs. In that sense, there has to be a design of sorts, I don’t see it as an intelligent one, but I don’t know.

    We may never know, B, I just don’t pretend to. That there might be something bigger than us, vaster than we can imagine, does not necessarily translate into a white-haired bearded guy who sets sets lions on children.

    • I don’t say random accident, and a theory is more than an educated guess, which is what one calls an hypothesis. A theory is that hypothesis which best explains the known facts, period.

      lol, Melfamy, look at what you just said. A theory is not an educated guess, it is an educated guess that best explains the known facts. All I did was remove the word hypothesis because YOU said it is an educated guess and look, you contradict yourself.

      We may never know, B, I just don’t pretend to. That there might be something bigger than us, vaster than we can imagine, does not necessarily translate into a white-haired bearded guy who sets sets lions on children.

      God never set lions on children – MEN DID!

      G, do me a favor and ask yourself this question:

      How do the universal constants that depend on set balances in our sealed-system universe – an expanding universe – remain constant? This is not a trick question, just a question many “scientists” ignore and/or dismiss, but it is valid because it is a real concern.

      We know the universe is expanding (it is actually accelerating, which poses another interesting problem we can discuss later if you wish), yet, in order for many of the critical variables that permit life to remain constant, it requires additional matter and energy to be constantly produced. Where is that coming from? And how is it produced – especially in a sealed system such as our universe?

      Let me know when you find an answer, please 🙂

      • Santa Clause. But G. doesn’t believe……hate that…..with all the gifts that we are given……just a fat guy in a red suit, or a Jew in a robe, we’re given so much…..

        Is the force of goodness so hard to conceive?

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